Ribble Valley has some of the most satisfied residents in the country, a survey has revealed.
More than 500 Ribble Valley households took part the 2013 Perception Survey undertaken by the East Lancashire Collaborative Research and Consultation Service to determine residents’ views on life in the borough.
The survey asked questions on a range of issues, including council services, health and wellbeing, community safety, road and pavement repairs, dog fouling, recycling and refuse collection, sport and leisure facilities, and open spaces.
And now the survey has revealed that 95% of Ribble Valley respondents are satisfied with life in the borough.
Low crime levels, health services and clean streets were considered the most important factors in making an area a good place in which to live, while road and pavement repairs, dog fouling and activities for teenagers were the factors most in need of improvement.
More than 90% of respondents were very or fairly satisfied with the council’s household refuse collection service, 85% with recycling, 76% felt the council provided good value for money and a further 76% were satisfied with council services, although 49% were very or fairly dissatisfied with dog fouling and 36% very or fairly dissatisfied with planning
Nine in 10 residents said they regularly recycled waste, while 98% of respondents felt they were very or fairly well informed about how and where to vote.
Not only have satisfaction levels in the borough improved since the 2011 Perception Survey, but satisfaction with public services is higher in Ribble Valley that other Lancashire authorities in all but sport and leisure facilities, and parks and open spaces.
Ribble Valley Borough Council leader Stuart Hirst said: “Although only a small rural authority, the council has an excellent record of success and enjoys a level of customer satisfaction that is the envy of neighbouring authorities, as well as healthy reserves and one of the lowest council tax rates in the country.
“The council’s elected members draw upon many diverse talents, recognise the importance of intelligent and courteous debate, and are united in a desire to ensure a secure and prosperous future for the borough.
“The council also has a professional and committed senior management team, and a loyal and dedicated workforce, whose commitment is the bedrock of the authority’s success.”
Given the high levels of current and proposed house building in the borough, Councillor Hirst said it was expected that planning would attract some dissatisfaction. He countered that the council was doing everything possible to finalise its core strategy, which would curtail excessive development, as well as working innovatively to tackle dog fouling.
“These are very encouraging results and we intend linking the survey’s findings to our decision-making processes, and strategic planning,” he added.